Ivanovic has sympathy for under-pressure Wawrinka

PTI| Updated: May 27, 2014, 21:25 PM IST

Paris: Ana Ivanovic said Tuesday she sympathised with Stan Wawrinka after the Australian Open champion flopped spectacularly at Roland Garros.

World number three Wawrinka was knocked out of the French Open in the first round by Spanish journeyman Guillermo Garcia Lopez as the Swiss cracked under the strain of expectations.

Ivanovic recognises Wawrinka`s dilemma after the Swiss star admitted he was trying to "put the puzzle back together".

When she captured the 2008 French Open as a shy, raw 20-year-old her career went into a steady tailspin.

The Serb didn`t reach another Grand Slam quarter-final until the US Open in 2012 while she also saw her ranking slip out of the top 50.

"It (winning a major) changes a lot because when you come and you are, you know, first up and coming, you have nothing to lose," said Ivanovic, who made the second round on Tuesday with a straight sets win over French hope Caroline Garcia.

"There are of pressures. But everyone was probably talking about his match in the semi-final rather than his match in the first round. It`s sometimes hard to deal with, especially when it`s new.

"It`s always hard. Probably he expected himself also to back it up."

Ivanovic has been in the headlines ever since her French Open breakthrough six years ago.

As well as her tennis, she was courted by sponsor after sponsor keen to cash in on her girl-next-door looks and down-to-earth personality.

But she was in tears after a fourth round defeat at Wimbledon in 2009 before health fears emerged over her drastic weight loss.

"I`m still adjusting," said Ivanovic when asked if she has grown into her role as poster girl for the women`s tour.

"It`s very individual, it depends also on the personality. I was very shy. For me, I didn`t like the feeling I was in a spotlight. So for me that was a big issue.

"You sort of grow up and mature and for me also it came when I was very young. Now I feel like a different person, different player."